​A ‘potted’ guide to bulb planting with DFDS and TV’s Sarah Raven

  • DFDS launches brand new bulb and flower market guide
  • Latest offers make it easier than ever to experience the flower markets of Europe

Award-winning ferry operator, DFDS has joined forces with TV gardener, writer and presenter, Sarah Raven, to create a bulb and flower market guide. Providing essential advice on the best European flower markets and gardens to visits, as well as tips on when to plant and which bulbs suit different garden types, the downloadable guide is perfect for anyone looking to capture the essence of Europe’s flower market season in their own back garden.

With spring in full bloom, now is a great time to explore the vast array of flower markets and gardens in Northern Europe. Our guide includes details on world-renowned gardens, such as the Keukenhof Gardens in Holland, as well as some hidden gems, such as Hortus Botanicus in Amsterdam and the Groot-Bijgaarden (Grand-Bigard) festival in Belgium in May.

About the guide

With content provided by Sarah Raven, garden expert and florist – best known for presenting BBC 2’s Bees, Butterflies and Blooms and Great British Garden Revival programmes – this helpful guide includes a useful calendar indicating when different varieties of bulbs should be planted and how to get the best results. Sarah also provides advice for different climates and soil types and offers her top tips on which varieties to choose too.

Current offers on DFDS’ Newcastle-Amsterdam route

Prices for a relaxing two or three night Keukenhof mini cruise start from just £99 per person for a two nights, or £185 per person for a three night break, including hotel stay* (both offers based on two people sharing). The mini cruise package includes two nights in a private, en-suite cabin onboard one of our cruise ferries, coach transfers to and from Keukenhof, as well as entrance tickets to the gardens. Or for a more flexible option, travel by ferry to Holland from just £70 per person each way, for a car and up to two people, from Newcastle to Amsterdam.

Current offers on DFDS’ Dover-France routes

DFDS is currently offering three and five day breaks from just £59 for a car and up to nine passengers on its Dover to Calais or Dunkirk routes. To redeem the three-day offer use the discount code E3DAY or E5DAY for the five-day offer at the point of purchase.

Commenting on the bulb guide and exploring the flower markets, Sarah Raven said:
“I’m delighted to be involved in this fantastic initiative. The flower markets of Europe are the Mecca for gardening inspiration and wherever you go, the markets and florists are rich with possibilities. It doesn’t matter if you have a large or small garden, or even just a window box, you’re sure to come back brimming with ideas. With the majority of the markets being so close, there really is no reason not to visit.

“While many people feel that they lack the knowledge to buy and plant bulbs, we hope this new guide will take the mystery out of gardening and encourage more people to get green-fingered during this coming spring and autumn.”

Max Foster, passenger director at DFDS, comments,
“Flower markets and gardens such as Keukenhof in Holland, are a wonderful place for professional and amateur gardeners alike. Whether you’re a perennial flower market visitor or you’re looking for inspiration, this guide can help you find the right flower market destination for you. DFDS offers the ideal gateway to Europe, offering easy access to some of the best flower markets in the world, with ferry services from both Dover and Newhaven to France, and from Newcastle to Amsterdam.

“Taking your car and a ferry over to Europe enables you to travel at your own pace and take your own route. You are also free from luggage weight or size restrictions, meaning you are able to easily bring home lots of beautiful flowers and bulbs to plant in your garden!”

To find download our European bulb guide now, visit www.dfds.co.uk/flowermarkets. Or for more information on the beautiful Keukenhof gardens and how to book your short break now, visit www.dfds.co.uk or telephone 0871 882 0885.

- ENDS –

For media enquiries contact:

Chelsey Palmer or Caroline Walker on 01732 779087 / dfdspr@westgatecomms.com

Notes to Editors

Terms and conditions for the Keukenhof mini cruise

*Three-night break includes a night in the Stopera hotel, with price quoted in the release based on two people sharing a double room.

Keukenhof mini cruise dates are currently available to travel on the following dates: April 12, 16, 20, 25 and 30 and May 3.

Terms and conditions for the three and five day breaks

These offers are valid on bookings made before 31 May 2015 for travel until 30 June 2015, subject to availability and selected exclusion dates.

These offers are available on return bookings only for cars and up to nine people and motorcycles / motorcycles with side cars with up to two people. £20 supplement applies to bookings made on the day of travel. £20 amendment fees apply each way. Offer may be withdrawn at any time.

*Offer not available on the following dates: 27-29 March, 3-5 April, 17-19 April, 22-24 May, 29-31 May.